Two socially deprived areas of Wolverhampton are set to benefit from new sports projects run by students from the city’s University.
The University of Wolverhampton has received £5,000 from the Active Citizens fund to run sports related projects in Heath Town and Whitmore Reans.
The West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner’s Active Citizens fund redistributes money confiscated from criminal activity and reinvests it in the local community.
Second year students on the Sports Studies and Development programme will be working on the projects as part of their course and gaining real world experience in the process.
Sport activities such as football and basketball will be used as a tool to tackle anti-social behaviour and improve health in the areas.
Sports Studies and Development students and young people from the local area will also be offered training opportunities in sports leadership and employability to ensure the activities are sustainable.
The projects are being supported by Creative Academies who bring a wealth of experience in community development and West Midlands Police neighbourhood teams.
Kathryn Leflay, Senior Lecturer in Sport Sociology at the University, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity for our students to gain real world experience that will put them ahead when they apply for jobs at the end of the course. I am proud that we have received this funding and that we have had the chance to offer something really positive for our surrounding communities.
“If through the power of sport we can help young people from disadvantaged backgrounds stay out trouble, improve their health and upskill through the leadership training offer, then we’ve done a good job.”
West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner David Jamieson said: “This is an excellent project that will see two deprived areas of Wolverhampton receive brand new sports equipment.
“Active Citizens sees criminals’ ill-gotten gains put back into the community and used for good.
“I’m sure this University of Wolverhampton project will result in fantastic benefits for the city.”
PC Joe Trusselle, from Wolverhampton Police, said: “This is an excellent initiative where young people from Heath Town and Whitmore Reans will benefit from the delivery of sports sessions along with a number of training opportunities. This will help provide longer term sustainability by empowering the local community to be able to deliver similar grass root projects in the future.
“Diversionary activities like this are a brilliant way to engage with children and young people, providing them with positive activities to get involved with and helping to continue to reduce anti-social behaviour.”
For more information please contact the Media Relations Office on 01902 32 2736 or 01902 518647.
Date Issued: Thursday, 16 March 2017